Lana Del Rey is a trendy and successful name in the world of modern-day music. In fact, she has accumulated 6 Grammy nominations and a Golden Globe nomination for her work. In addition, she has also bagged a number of awards including one Sattelite Award, 2 Brit Awards, 9 GAFFA Awards and 2 MTV Europe Music Awards. In fact, she has been one of the most influential singers and songwriters of the 21st century. As a result, she commands a large fan base. The music world knows her songs mainly for the theme of tragic romance
However, Lana Del Rey has recently faced criticism for the lyrics of her songs from her 2011 album, Born to Die, and her 2014 album Ultraviolence. We know that in a song, the lyrics are as important as the music. Therefore, the lyrics get as much attention as the music in a song. As a result, even a slightly controversial lyric can come under a strict scanner. Some of the lyrics from the songs of Lana Del Rey have been criticised for allegedly glamorising domestic violence. In fact, the nature of her influence over feminism has also been a glaring question. Such questions and debates follow every new release of Lana. Therefore, perhaps anticipating another such debate, back in May 2020, while announcing her seventh album, she made a comment that sparked off a great debate. Read the article to know more about the controversial comment made by Lana.
The Controversial Note
Back in May 2020, while announcing the release of her seventh album, Lana Del Rey posted a note from her Instagram account. In fact, this very note became a hot topic of debate immediately after its arrival. On that note, Lana expressed her frustration with the “female writer and alt singers” who claim that she glamorises abuse. She further claimed that she herself is a glamorous person and then she named seven successful women musicians, calling out the content of their songs.
Interestingly, of the six women whom Lana Del Rey named, five are women of colour. She stated that Ariana, Cardi B, Doja Cat, Camila, Nicki Minaj and Kehlani have a number of songs, which are about “being sexy, wearing no clothes, fucking, cheating etc.” By sighting these instances she pleaded that if people have no issue with such lyrics, then the critics should also allow her to compose songs about “being embodied, feeling beautiful by being in love even if the relationship is not perfect, or dancing for money”, without being “crucified” by criticisms about glamorising abuse.
The Problem With The Statement
When viewed as a mode of justification, the statement by Lana Del Rey seems okay. However, the issue lay with its way of delivery. She claims that the critics should treat her in a similar manner as they treat other successful women singers who write on almost similar lines as her. However, to drive this point home, there was no need to call out the contents of other successful women artists. Moreover, the five artists named by her are women of colour. People have not exempted these women of colour from misogynistic and racist attacks, in spite of thier towering success. Therefore, Lana Del Rey’s claim of being “crucified” seems nothing when compared to the varied types of criticisms that artists like Beyoncé and Nicky Minaj face.
This statement by Lana sounds similar to the comment made by Alison Roman, where she dropped the names of Chrissy Teigen and Marie Kondo. It is true that Roman might have faced the same sexism as Teigen and Kondo. But she has never dealt with the added sting of racism faced by the other two women. Therefore, these comments have disappointed the fans of both Lana and Roman.
Some of the fans of Lana Del Rey attempted to defend her statement by claiming that by dropping the names of the other women stars, she was trying to expose the double standard of feminism. However, one must remember that Beyoncé too faced similar criticism from feminists after the release of Lemonade.
However, Lana is right in claiming that feminism consists of speaking about the lived experience of a woman without skipping the not-so-glorious and darker events of life. She is also right in defending her art. However, the words that she chose to vent out her emotion, seem inappropriate. That is all for today.